February 14, 2007
Mr. Karen and I got back last night from four days of skiing in Idaho. My vision for today included going to work, catching up on my e-mail, and doing a trip report. It didn’t work out that way. We had a snowstorm here in metro Detroit overnight (thanks, universe—we could have used that on the ski slopes) and evidently not everyone got the memo that snow makes the roads slippery, because a woman crashed into me on the freeway as I was driving to work. By “into me” I mean, “into Mr. Karen’s truck, which he let me drive today because it has 4-wheel drive”. Well, 4-wheel drive doesn’t really help that much when someone slams into the corner of the truck and spins it around. I was lucky that I was able to bring the truck to a stop before I spun into the ditch or hit or got hit by anyone or anything else. Thank heaven the drivers coming up behind us were more sensible than the woman who crashed into me.
When I stopped, I was sideways across two of the four lanes of traffic but was able to start the engine again and maneuver to the shoulder. The car that hit me was in the ditch. Three other cars pulled over—I didn’t know if they were involved in the accident or what. As it turned out, two of those cars were good Samaritans—one knocked on my window to see if I was okay (I was, just banged up my elbow a little near as I could tell) and then called the police, the other gave me his business card and said he’d be happy to be a witness. The third guy, it turned out, was the husband of the woman who hit me; he said he was driving behind her and saw her lose control.
The rescue squad stopped by next—they were already in the area for another accident—and then left after making sure no one was injured. Then the state trooper came—she first asked who was driving the vehicle in the ditch. She asked the other woman if she was driving a little too fast and the woman said “no, there was just some ice or snow on the road”, as if that were somehow something she couldn’t have anticipated. The officer didn’t have many questions for me—what lane was I in, did I want her to call a tow truck.
Then the tow truck came and put my truck on the flatbed and hooked the other vehicle to the back and off we went. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get the tow truck driver to take me to the body shop near home, so here I am in the coffee shop he dropped me off at, paying too much for internet access but it’s distracting me from thoughts of how bad the accident could have been. If I’d been in my little car and hit by that SUV, I can only imagine.